St. Elizabeth Healthcare is committed to being the healthiest community in Kentucky. One important way to achieve that goal is vaccinations. Being immunized helps to keep both children and adults healthy, avoiding missed school and work days while providing protection from communicable illnesses for the entire community.
Proper Vaccination Prevents Diseases
Dr. Robert Tracy, a Family Medicine Physician at St. Elizabeth for more than 30 years, believes that one of the greatest advances in modern healthcare is the development of immunizations.
“It is so important for children and adults to be immunized to protect against life-threatening and debilitating diseases,” says Dr. Tracy. “Paralysis from polio, sterility from measles and cancers due to HPV viruses – it all can be prevented with proper vaccinations.”
The current Hepatitis A outbreak is an example of an outbreak of a preventable disease that would not exist if people were properly vaccinated. Unvaccinated children and adults are at a higher risk for life-threatening illnesses and even death. If a preventable illness is contracted, pediatric patients and their families may miss school or work to avoid spreading the disease to others.
Are Vaccinations Safe?
It’s a big question for parents: are vaccines safe for our children? Dr. Tracy says an unequivocal yes.
“The United States currently has the safest and most effective vaccines in our national history,” says Dr. Tracy. “Vaccines are extensively studied and go through extensive clinical trials before being released to the public. Once they’re released, the CDC monitors continually for safety and any adverse events.”
Incorrect information and misconceptions are widespread on social media about a variety of topics – including vaccines. Do your homework, visit accredited information sites like the American Academy of Pediatrics Immunization Policy and discuss any concerns with a trusted physician.
The Cornerstone of Prevention
Vaccines are the cornerstone of prevention. At St. Elizabeth, we take a proactive approach to endorsing vaccines. It’s important to stick to the recommended vaccination schedule – timing and completion of vaccine series is critically important for ensuring full immunity. This is true for both children and adults. Older adults can receive shingles and pneumonia immunizations, helping to prevent serious illness.
What’s the easiest way to make sure your child is on schedule with their vaccinations? Make an annual well visit appointment with the child’s primary care physician. The physician’s office keeps careful records of each immunization, and during the child’s yearly checkup – or monthly visits, when the child is an infant – the vaccine schedule will be reviewed and the vaccine given if the child is due.
St. Elizabeth: Your Partner in Vaccinations
For more information on vaccines or to schedule an appointment with a Primary Care Physician at St. Elizabeth, please call 1-800-737-7900. We offer highly skilled, compassionate physicians at a variety of convenient Northern Kentucky locations.